Here's the "default" posture, the one we think of humans as having naturally and the kind of posture we associate most with youth.
I think in our minds when we look at how people are standing we subconsciously relate their posture to this "yardstick" (above) of how we know young people with perfect posture might stand. And when the relationship and orientation of the head, ribs and hips changes from this upright "norm", that can tell us a lot about that person: Are they young? Are they healthy? Confident? Happy? Sad? Or are they old? Are they sick? Are they in pain? Scared? Do they feel defeated or overwhelmed by the world?
So obviously there are two aspects to "posture", or the orientation of the head, rib cage and hips. There's the way we carry ourselves in normal everyday life (do we slouch? Or do we walk upright?), and the more immediate effect our mood has on our posture. A person with perfect posture may slouch when depressed, tired, or sick, but otherwise may carry themselves upright and straight.
The relation ship between the head, ribs and hips is an interesting balance of angles that play off of each other. It's a mistake to think of them like this:
The fact that the human body (and all living things) is full of masses counter-balancing each other and curves connecting them is the greatest tools we have as artists to give our drawings fluidity and rhythm. Always look for ways to emphasize these beautiful curves!
Of course the relationship between the head, ribs and hips is not rigid and unchanging. The spine (which connects all of them) is very flexible.
So this installment is all about the relationship between the head, ribs and hips when we're standing upright and when the forms are perfectly balanced. In the next part we'll talk about dealing with those forms when you're NOT standing perfectly upright (which is about 99% of the time, of course).
Almost every move of any substance you make with your body has a ripple effect on how these three forms relate to each other, to maintain your balance. Even turning your head from a standing position to look to the side brings your head out forward, which means your rib cage leans back to compensate and your hips will either lean forward to balance the whole thing out like this: